Tongue Diagnosis in Chinese Medicine by Giovanni MaciociaExamination of the tongue, like the pulse, is one of the principal diagnostic methods in traditional Chinese medicine. This book--newly revised in 1995--systematically describes each of the primary characteristics of the tongue (body color, shape and coating) and their significance in the clinic. It traces the historical development of tongue diagnosis and its relationship to externally- contracted disorders and the eight principals. Featured in this revised edition are 59 color plates and accompanying case histories from the authors own practice. Other aspects of tongue diagnosis newly described in this edition include the integration of tongue and pulse diagnosis; the use of the tongue in diagnosing emotional problems; tongue diagnosis and herbal treatment; the tongue in prognosis; and special considerations regarding tongue diagnosis in children.
Your Tongue Color Can Reveal At Least 13 Health Problems
Tongue Diagnosis in Traditional Chinese Medicine
Photo by Stocksy. In Chinese medicine, the tongue is used as a very influential source for diagnosis, as it's the only external organ of the body with visual indicators. We look at the tongue to measure various factors; we look to see the shape, quality, texture, coating, and color of the tongue because of its many relationships and connections in the body and the internal organs. Given its simple and noninvasive nature, tongue diagnosis is becoming a preliminary screening procedure in early detection even in the Western world. It's an exciting step toward bridging the gap between the East and the West especially because it's another awesome and simple tool that can tell you a lot about health, even when it comes to looking at life-threatening diseases like cancer. Ready to take a look at your tongue to see what's going on? Go ahead, open wide and let your entire tongue hang out; look in the mirror.
The tongue has many relationships and connections in the body, both to the meridians and the internal organs. It is therefore very useful and important during inspection for confirming TCM diagnosis. It can present strong visual indicators of a person's overall harmony or disharmony. The tongue has a special relationship with the Heart, in that the Heart opens to the tongue. The tongue is said to be an "offshoot" of the Heart, or "flowers" into the Heart. The normal tongue in Traditional Chinese Medicine has a light red or pinkish body with a thin white coating.
As we discussed in our Secrets of Pulse Diagnosis post , tongue diagnosis is another primary method in Chinese Medicine for understanding what is happening inside the human body. As with the pulse, there are general qualities of the tongue that show how the body is doing on a macro level, and specific qualities that zoom in on particular organ systems of the body. These will be described in more detail below. Over time, Chinese medicine has observed that certain parts of the tongue relate to certain parts of the body. Here are some of the most typical examples. One of the benefits of tongue diagnosis is the ability to help us make a differential diagnosis, which identifies the cause of a particular symptom.
Getting a Big Picture View
Tongue Diagnosis - Traditional Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture
I am a year-old man. For many years, I have had a white coating on my tongue. Every day before I sleep, I brush my teeth and sometimes use mouth wash. In the morning after I wake up, there is a white coating on my tongue. I have bought a tongue scraper from the pharmacy to scrape away the coating.
According to the principles of TCM, analyzing the appearance of an individual's tongue can provide a greater understanding of his or her overall health. Once a tongue diagnosis is completed and other aspects of the patient's health are evaluated, the practitioner may recommend treatment with such therapies as acupuncture , acupressure , herbal medicine, food therapy, and massage. In TCM, it's thought that different areas of the tongue reflect the health of five corresponding organ systems: liver, lung, spleen, heart, and kidney. TCM is based on the theory that all of the body's organs mutually support each other and that — in order to achieve optimal health — an individual's organs must be in balance. Although it's been used in TCM for many years, tongue diagnosis and its validity as a medical assessment tool haven't been thoroughly explored in scientific studies. Tongue diagnosis should not be used as a substitute for standard medical care or to diagnose potential health problems.